Pumpkin-Poultry Pot Pie

Pumpkin-Poultry Pot Pie

I agonized — let me tell you — about what to call this recipe. First, in my head, it was a pumpkin pot pie. But that sounded too much like a plain old pumpkin pie; or like a pot pie with little chunks of pumpkin floating around. Not appetizing. Then it was a poultry pot pumpkin. That, I thought, was cleverer. But it was unclear to the folks on whom I tested it what the pot meant, given that we don’t live in Colorado or Washington State. I went back and forth until Sarah finally told me: why don’t you give it a descriptive — not cutesy — title? Your readers will appreciate it, and the fairies at Google who decide how to rank pages will appreciate it too. So I did. And it’s what you see above.

But no matter what this dish is called, here’s the important part: there’s lots of stuff floating around on the Internet about what to cook for Thanksgiving. I’ve posted here, in fact, about how one might go about roasting a turkey, making squash side dishes, and even pumpkin mousse. But what’s really important in this season of too much food is not what you do on the day itself, but — clearly — how you handle the leftovers.

Caramelized Onion Tart, 2014 Edition

Caramelized Onion Tart, 2014 Edition

Is your old model caramelized onion tart starting to feel long in the tooth? Do you bring it to parties only to have your friends and family give it a big ho hum? Well I’m here to tell you, folks, that the new and improved Twice Cooked onion tart is here to save the day, taking your allium game from old to new.

That’s right. Just in time for your Thanksgiving feast, we’ve upgraded our caramelized onion tart from one featuring Manchego cheese and a few Walnuts to one bursting with bacon, Brussels sprouts, and a cheddar so sharp that it will make the back of your tongue convulse with joy (your Cheddar may vary).

Twice Cooked Thanksgiving Recipe Index

The moment of truth is upon us, Thanksgiving cooks.  Now is the time for a frenetic flurry of brining birds and baking bread, looking up last minute formulae for oyster dressing and sweet potato pie.  At this late date, there’s little I can do to soothe your jangled nerves.  But I can at least do this.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Vegan Pumpkin Soup

For your convenience, here is an index of Twice Cooked’s Thanksgiving recipes from this year and last:

And here are a couple of other recipes that you might find useful (and seasonally appropriate) as you plan your Thanksgiving meal:

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!  And happy Chanukah, too!

And when all the food is eaten and all the dishes are done, remember to support this site by clicking through here to Amazon.com to do your holiday shopping.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Pumpkin Mousse

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Pumpkin Mousse

I would appreciate it if you would all take the word ‘pumpkin’ in pumpkin mousse to be a metonym for a larger category, rather than a thing unto itself. I’m not trying to mislead you about the content of this dessert. You could, in fact, make it using a pumpkin. But this is a companion piece to my recent entry on winter squash purée. And as such, I feel it is my duty to inform you that in my version, there is nary a proper pumpkin to be found.

As I said in that post, the issue is not that I have any antipathy toward pumpkins. Far from it. But as I look out at the landscape of tough, warty, leather-skinned gourds at my culinary disposal, I find that there are lots of better ones — even to use in dessert.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Roast Turkey Breast Roulade

Roast Turkey Breast Roulade

As you consider this turkey breast roulade, I’d like you to think about two possible scenarios.

First: you’re having a small Thanksgiving. Maybe the budget is a little tight this year — maybe you got hit by the recent government shutdown — and the idea of flying to another state, and contending with a hotel, and managing the maintenance of hypothetical progeny is more than you can bear. And so you invite four or five friends, similarly stranded, to your house to share a meal, a couple of bottles of off-dry riesling, and — if you’re absolutely nothing like me — the gladiatorial rumble of two matched teams playing at American football.

It’s a comfortable Thanksgiving. Not elaborate, but enough.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Hunger and the Holidays

As of November 1 — just in time for Thanksgiving — Federal funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has been drastically reduced. The program had been living on funds from the 2009 stimulus for a while now, and absent the willingness of Congress to appropriate money for hunger relief, families receiving aid have seen their food stamps slashed by an average of $36 per month.

Now that doesn’t necessarily sound like a lot of cash. But here, according to the Daily Kos, is what $36 per month buys:

a gallon of milk, a pound of broccoli, a pound of bananas, a dozen eggs, and a pound of spaghetti every single week. Or two pounds of chicken legs, two pounds of rice, a pound of apples, a pound of tomatoes, and two pounds of iceberg lettuce.

Food banks and other charitable organizations are left trying to make up the difference. But the difference, according to this piece at CNN, is something like $5 billion. The charitable system can’t make up such a loss, one food-bank director in New Jersey told the Daily Kos. To put it bluntly, we can’t come in and make up $90 million across the state. We just can’t.

And that’s where all of us come in. Charity alone cannot close the hunger deficit in the United States this Thanksgiving. But every little bit counts. What I am posting here are links to the donation pages for my local hunger relief organization, Philabundance, and for one of leading national hunger relief charities, Feeding America.

It doesn’t really matter which you choose, as long as you choose to give. Charity may not solve the problem, but it will certainly help somebody have a happier Thanksgiving in 2013.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Roasted Squash with Sage and Bacon

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Roasted Squash with Sage and Bacon

So here’s the good-news / bad-news situation. Which should — by this point — sound like a pretty familiar situation to folks reading along at home.

The bad news is that once again, for the third year out of the last five, I’m not hosting Thanksgiving. I used to insist that Thanksgiving was my holiday. I used to beg, plead, and cajole family and friends to schlep out to Philadelphia from California, or Missouri, or wherever else to come eat turkey and dressing, pie, bread, and even curry — whether they wanted to or not. I insisted that you simply must make an appearance! It’s Sarah’s and my anniversary, and it we would be terribly offended if you stayed away. And then I had a grand old time cooking like a crazy person and sometimes confounding Thanksgiving expectations.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Roasted Turkey

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Roasted Turkey

Call it a gobbler, a motherclucker, even Big Bird (if you’re a certain, recently-former presidential candidate). I’ll know what you mean. Turkey is the centerpiece of almost every Thanksgiving meal. And it’s the centerpiece of stress — believe me, I know — for more than a few holiday cooks. For first-time turkey-cookers, the problem is […]

Lonely No More: Veg*n Holiday Cooking & Eating

Sharyn is a professor of English, avid runner, and champion napper. When not teaching, running, or under her beloved Slanket, she bakes vegan treats and greedily reads her friends’ blogs. Originally from Massachusetts, Sharyn has lived in southern Indiana for the past 8 years and earned her PhD in December 2011. (She’s wicked proud of […]